Thursday, May 5, 2011

Identifying the Elements of a European Cloud Strategy

The 1st Digital Agenda Assembly, which will be held in Brussels on June 16-17 2011, will include the workshop Towards a Cloud Computing Strategy for Europe: Matching Supply and Demand to help identify the main elements of a European Cloud Strategy and the possible need for public-policy intervention, considering demand and supply side concerns. The workshop, organized by Maria Tsakali and chaired by Megan Richards, is composed of three different panels:
  • Cloud Computing: what will Europe do?
  • Cloud computing fostering innovation
  • Towards cloud interoperability
I will participate in the panel about fostering innovation with cloud computing, where we will discuss the opportunities presented by the cloud and the potential for innovation. Other panelists are senior-management representatives of European companies, organizations and networks, and the European Parliament.

The workshop will build on and broaden the consultation process on a European
Cloud Computing strategy launched by Vice-President Neelie Kroes in the World Economic Forum Davos, 27 January 2011. The strategy includes three main areas:
  • First, the legal framework. This concerns data protection and privacy, including the international dimension. It also concerns laws and other rules that have a bearing on the deployment of cloud computing in public and private organisations. And it concerns users' rights insofar as they are provided for by law.
  • Second, technical and commercial fundamentals. We want to extend our research support and focus on critical issues such as security and availability of cloud services. As a mediator, the Commission can also play a stronger role in the technical standardisation of APIs and data formats, as well as in the development of template contracts and service level agreements.
  • Third, the market. We will support pilot projects aiming at cloud deployment. To really harness the power of public procurement we want to engage with our public sector partners on Member State and regional levels to work on common approaches to cloud computing.

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